The Chronicles of Narnia is a series of seven fantasy novels by British writer C. S. Lewis. Illustrated by Pauline Baynes and initially released between 1950 and 1956, The Chronicles of Narnia has been adapted for radio, television, stage, film, and computer games. Just how many Narnia books are there? Reading to find out more.
About Clive Staples Lewis
Clive Staples Lewis (1898-1963) was one of those intellectual giants of the twentieth century and arguably among the most influential authors of his day. He was a Fellow and Tutor in English Literature at Oxford University until 1954, when he had been elected to the Chair of Medieval and Renaissance Literature at Cambridge University, a position he held until his retirement.
He wrote over thirty books, allowing him to reach a vast audience, and his works continue to attract thousands of new readers each year. His most distinguished and popular accomplishments include Out of the Silent Planet, The Great Divorce, The Screwtape Letters, and the acknowledged classics The Chronicles of Narnia. So far, the Narnia books have sold over 100 million copies and have now been changed into three big motion pictures.
How Many Narnia Books Are There?
Chronicles Of Narnia Books In Order
The books were initially published in this sequence:
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (1950)
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe is a fantasy novel for children written by C. S. Lewis and published by Geoffrey Bles in 1950. It is the first published and best known of seven novels in The Chronicles of Narnia (1950–1956). Among all the author’s works, it is also the most widely read and beloved.
The story is about four English siblings—Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy Pevensie—who are sent to live with an old professor during the Second World War. In the professor’s house, they discover a wardrobe that leads to the magical land of Narnia.
There, they encounter Talking Animals and the evil White Witch who has cursed the land with eternal winter. With the help of Aslan, a noble and divine lion, the children defeat the witch, thaw the land and assume their rightful places as kings and queens of Narnia.
The book has been adapted several times for stage, television, radio and cinema, including an animated film released in 2005. In 2003, it was named one of the top 100 books of all time by the National Education Association.
Prince Caspian: The Return to Narnia (1951)
In the frame story, four English children are evacuated to the countryside during the Blitz of World War II. They find a magic wardrobe in an old house which transports them into the world of Narnia.
The novel revolves around Prince Caspian’s return to Narnia, his struggle to overthrow the evil King Miraz, and the aid he receives from Aslan the lion and the Pevensie children.
The novel was well received by critics. Reviewers praised Lewis’s use of light and darkness as well as good and evil, and some found religious themes in the book. However, others felt that the novel moved too slowly and contained too much violence. The book has been adapted for radio, television, the stage, and several films.
The Voyage of the Dawn Treader (1952)
The Voyage of the Dawn Treader is a novel by C. S. Lewis, published by Geoffrey Bles in 1952. It was the third published of seven novels in The Chronicles of Narnia (1950–1956), and Lewis had finished writing it in 1950, before the first book was out.
It is volume five in recent editions, which are sequenced according to Narnia history. In the frame story, set during the England of the Second World War, Edmund and Lucy Pevensie, along with their cousin Eustace Scrubb, are pulled into the painting of a ship at sea and rescued from a storm by Caspian X, King of Narnia.
Caspian is on a quest to find seven lost lords of Narnia, who were banished when his evil uncle Miraz took the throne. After defeating the mist, they return to Narnia and Caspian is crowned king.
The Silver Chair (1953)
It was the fourth published of seven novels in The Chronicles of Narnia (1950–1956), and one of Lewis’s more famous works, having been adapted for radio, television, the stage, and cinema. Like the others, it was illustrated by Pauline Baynes, and her work has been retained in many later editions.
Eustace Scrubb, Jill Pole, and Puddleglum the Marsh-wiggle set out on a quest to find King Caspian X’s missing son, Prince Rilian. They are helped by Aslan the lion and eventually succeed in their task. The novel deals with issues of trust, faith, and hope.
The Horse and His Boy (1954)
The book is set in the fictional world of Narnia, a land of talking animals and mythical creatures.
Shasta, a boy from Calormen, escapes his fate as a slave and, with the help of a talking horse named Bree, sets off on a journey across the desert to Narnia. Along the way, they are joined by Aravis, a girl from Calormen who is also fleeing an unwanted marriage.
The three reach Narnia just as a war is about to break out between the Calormenes and the Narnians. Shasta and Aravis take part in the battle, which ends with the defeat of the Calormenes.
After the battle, Shasta and Aravis are married and live happily in Narnia for many years. They have several children, including two sons who become kings of Narnia.
The Magician’s Nephew (1955)
The Magician’s Nephew is the prequel to C. S. Lewis’s classic fantasy series, The Chronicles of Narnia. It tells the story of how the evil White Witch came to power in the land of Narnia and how Aslan, the great lion, first came to Narnia.
The book begins with two children, Digory and Polly, who are transported to a strange world called Charn. There they meet a magician named Uncle Andrew who has been experimenting with a magic ring. He sends them back to our world, but they accidentally take a magical apple with them.
The apple has the power to make people young or old, and it is this power that the White Witch uses to gain control over Narnia. She makes herself immortal and rules the land with an iron fist. But her power is not absolute. Aslan, the great lion, comes to Narnia and his presence changes everything.
The Magician’s Nephew is a classic tale of good versus evil, and it is a perfect introduction to the wonderful world of Narnia.
The Last Battle (1956)
The Last Battle is a novel by C. S. Lewis, published by The Bodley Head in 1956. It was the seventh and final book in The Chronicles of Narnia (1950–1956), a series that Lewis had written for children.
The novel is set almost entirely within the Narnian world and chronicles its end. In the frame story, two human children, Polly and Digory, are transported to the world of Narnia where they assist Aslan, the lion god, in defeating the evil Emperor of the final age of Narnia.
The novel received largely positive reviews on its release and has been labelled a classic of children’s literature. Some critics, however, found the book’s ending unsatisfactory and overly pessimistic.
Sometime following the passing of C. S. Lewis, British variants of these books started to appear, which were numbered based on the order that the stories occur:
- The Magician’s Nephew
- The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
- The Horse and His Boy
- Prince Caspian: The Return to Narnia
- The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
- The Silver Chair
- The Last Battle
The Change to Chronological Order
For several decades, both orders have been in printing. American variants used book order while British variations were plotted.
The chronological arrangement became the global standard after HarperCollins took on the publishing in 1994.
The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, the first book to be written and printed, is usually believed to be the ideal introduction to Narnia by fans and scholars alike.
“Most scholars disagree with [the decision to re-number the books] and find it the least faithful to Lewis’s deepest intentions,” says Dr. Paul F. Ford, author of Companion to Narnia.
On the official site of C. S. Lewis, Dr. Charlie W. Starr asserts, Lewis scholars almost universally agree the original printed order is exceptional. He indicates the Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe are somewhat more originally attractive than The Magician’s Nephew, which particular lines in Lion don’t make sense once the book isn’t read. That Nephew has higher mythic energy when read as a prequel.
Why were the books re-numbered chronologically?
Initially, HarperCollins added this excuse in the books:
“The HarperCollins editions of The Chronicles of Narnia have been re-numbered in compliance with the original wishes of the author, C. S. Lewis.”
In later versions, the justification was revised to:
“Although The Magician’s Nephew was written several years after C. S. Lewis first began The Chronicles of Narnia, he wanted it to be read as the first book in the series. HarperCollins is happy to present these books in the order in which Professor Lewis preferred.”
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What did C.S.Lewis say?
Back in 1957, an 11-year-old boy called Lawrence Krieg was planning to see the Narnia books for another time. Lawrence wondered whether he must re-read them, but his mother believed he must stick with the first printed order. So, Lawrence wrote a letter to the writer and received this answer:
“I believe I concur with your purchase for reading the books more than with your mom’s. The series wasn’t planned beforehand as she thinks. When I wrote The Lion I didn’t know I was planning to write any longer. Then I wrote P. Caspian as a sequel and still did not believe there are any more, and once I had done The Voyage I felt quite sure it’d be the final. However, I found that I was wrong. So maybe it doesn’t matter very much in which order anyone read them”
This letter is mentioned by viewers on both sides of the contentious choice to re-number the books. Proponents see this as apparent evidence Lewis wanted the readers to see in chronological order. He was figuring out that Lewis indicated the ruling doesn’t matter much at precisely the same letter, and he might have re-numbered the books himself when he wanted to.
Douglas Gresham, the stepson of C.S. Lewis (Jack), stated:
“[HarperCollins] asked, ‘What order do you think we ought to do them in?’ And I said, ‘Well … I actually asked Jack himself what order he preferred and thought they should be read in. And he said he thought they should be read in the order of Narnian chronology.’ So I said, ‘Why don’t you go with what Jack himself wanted?’ So, it’s my fault basically—the order of Narnian chronology. And I’m not the least bit ashamed of it.” – Douglas Gresham
Walden Media’s Narnia films followed the first published order:
- The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (2005)
- Prince Caspian (2008)
- The Voyage of the Dawn Treader (2010)
Is Narnia 4 coming out?
However, The Chronicles of Narnia Movie 4, The Silver Chair today will not be occurring at all… and the future is looking quite perplexing. The future of Narnia 4 is in serious doubt, as Netflix has obtained the rights to the book collection. Netflix says they will create Narnia films and TV shows (!!!) In this dreamworld.
Is Aslan Jesus?
Aslan is the only character to appear in all seven books of the Chronicles of Narnia. According to the writer, C. S. Lewis, Aslan represents Jesus Christ that uses the allegory from the books that Aslan is the Lion and the Lamb, which also states in the Bible about God.
Why did Susan stop believing in Narnia?
There comes a stage where Susan, the older woman, is missing Narnia because she becomes interested in lipstick. She has become irreligious essentially because she discovered gender.
Does Netflix have Narnia 2020?
Short answer: yes. Regardless of Gresham’s remarks, Netflix is still growing Chronicles of Narnia content, according to Lewis’ books. At a recent development, Coco co-writer Matthew Aldrich was declared as ingenious architect on all Narnia jobs this past year.
Are Chronicles of Narnia religious?
Even though some saw the books as possible proselytizing material, others insisted that non-believing audiences may love the books in their merits. The Narnia books have a sizable Christian after and are commonly utilized to promote Christian thoughts.
The Chronicles of Narnia is a great series of books that tells the story of a magical land called Narnia. The books are full of adventure, mystery, and magic. They are perfect for readers who enjoy fantasy stories. Hopefully the above article about “how many books in the Chronicles of Narnia” will give you more chances to enrich your art resource.